How to Attract Wild Birds: The Best Bird Feeders, Food and More. How to Attract Wild Birds: The Best Bird Feeders, Food and More.

Posted by Emma Oldroyd, on

How to Attract Wild Birds: The Best Bird Feeders, Food and More.

Having wild birds as regular visitors to your garden is not only great for bird watching but can actually help your garden out! Whilst enjoying their seed, wild birds can help rid your lawn of weeds- they eat some parasites which can ruin your plants and of course, help with flower pollination.

It’s also easier than you think to create a happy environment for wild birds in whatever garden space you have; whether it’s a small balcony or football-field sized lawn, there are a variety of ways to help encourage wildlife into your garden space.

We’ve put together a guide on which food and feeders to use, plus which important safety steps to take to keep your favourite wild birds coming back time and time again.

The secret to getting wild birds in your garden.

There is no secret, however it does take more than just a sprinkling of seed to keep wrens, robins and sparrows popping in for a snack from time to time.

Safety first. It’s important that bird feeders and water baths are placed strategically away from predators such as foxes and cats, especially if you’re putting up nesting boxed for fledglings. Feeders need to be sheltered from the wind and high up, but not too close to bushes and fence tops. We would always recommend to pop feeders in more quiet areas of your garden too, so the birds don’t get disturbed whilst feeding.

Water. A water source is crucial for birds throughout the year. Bird baths don’t have to be fancy either, we would recommend a shallow container (1-2inches max) placed in the shade and where birds can easily spot potential predators. Fresh water is also important, so make sure you refresh as often as you can and remove any ice which occurs during winter.

Nesting. Allowing birds to nest in your garden can get them to return year in and out. Adding nesting boxes to sheltered areas of your garden, away from both direct sunlight and predators. It’s also important to ensure nesting boxes are away from areas which can be affected by strong winds (ideally, somewhere between north and east facing).

Feeders. The easiest and best way to encourage garden bird visits is to install some filled bird feeders with good quality bird food. Both you and your birds will be spoilt for choice with the variety of seeds to help attract different bird species. It’s also important to clean your feeders regularly, especially if you’re switching between seeds for different birds.

Natural foods/plants. By planting a variety of bird friendly plants, shrubs and wildflowers in your garden you can help your wild bird visitors not only find natural food sources, but many wild birds will naturally find shelter and nesting sites among your greenery.

Berry-rich trees and shrubs like rowan, hawthorn, guelder rose and holly are all great natural food sources and also help to provide shelter.

Plants with an abundance of seeds are another great choice, such as teasels or sunflowers. Ivy and honeysuckle are also popular with birds – they provide dense cover, fruits and attract insects for birds to feast on.

The best food for every type of bird.

Different wild bird food can attract different birds to your garden, favourites such as mealworms, nyger seeds and peanuts will attract everything from robins and starlings to woodpeckers and wrens. Year round essentials like suet balls and fat feeders are also great for winter and spring, helping your birds pass on the nutrients to fledglings and keeping their fat stores up for winter.

The best feeders for wild birds.

Again, different feeders are suitable for different birds. Our best tip here is to ensure that you invest in a squirrel proof feeder for whichever nuts and seeds you choose- that way only your wild birds will feed, and those pesky squirrels won’t steal their food.

  • Flip top feeders are easy to refill and clean.
  • Feeders with perches will help your wild bird visitors get a good grip on their dinner.
  • Window feeders are great if you don’t have space to hang a regular feeder in your garden.
  • Coconuts and pinecones can also be used (ready filled) to attract birds, a great idea if you are looking for something more natural.

Whilst attracting wild birds to your garden isn’t always easy, it can be extremely rewarding for bird waters and nature lovers alike. If you’re looking to create a thriving environment for wildlife in your back yard, you can also view our range of wildlife food, or speak to our experts about finding the perfect combination of wild bird food.